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Blog: Latveria In The Cold War

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I took the day off work last Wednesday, to go to... well, to go to UAL, where I work, but for a different reason than usual. For LO! I was heading to the London College Of Communication to spend the day at a conference about Transnational Comics.

It was DEAD GOOD - there were lots of interesting talks, my favourite being the keynote given by Dr Ian Horton about Donald Duck in The Netherlands. Walt Disney comics are still hugely popular in Europe, and he showed how in a single issue there were stories taken from four or five different countries, also different time periods, with different backgrounds showing markedly different places. He talked about the weirdness of Donald sometimes clearly being Dutch and knowing how things worked, and sometimes clearly NOT, as well as how the different time periods all seemed to happen simultaneously. It was MOST INTERESTING, and I reckon gives a pretty good idea of what this Transnationalism is really ABOUT.

I was doing a presentation myself, about how portrayals of Latveria (Doctor Doom's fictional homeland) changed over the course of the Cold War. It was an adaptation of a talk I did nearly two years ago, and it was a VERY different experience doing it this time. The original version had been my first comics presentation, so I STUFFED it full of quotations and footnotes, and read most of it off a piece of paper. Since then I've realised that it's actually better to SUMMARISE and express the BIG POINTS from a place of KNOWLEDGE i.e. have an idea what you are on about and what you want to say, but instead of working it all out like a SPEECH, use the SLIDES to guide yourself through it, more like a GIG.

This way is a bit more NERVE-WRACKING but does involve a lot less LEARNING of text, and also tends to be a lot more entertaining to watch, I reckon, and it all seemed to go pretty well. The only downside of it was that, originally, I was meant to be doing a PAPER based on the original presentation but, after getting EXTENSIVE feedback from the peer reviewers, I'd decided not to. Now I'm thinking maybe I should! CURSES!

posted 12/3/2019 by MJ Hibbett

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